Brett Burney, Nextpoint’s eLaw Evangelist, shares his thoughts after attending ClioCon 2022 with the Nextpoint team.
Law firms that refuse to adopt cloud-based tools may struggle to maintain continuity in the post-pandemic world.
That was the strong, overarching message from the impactful Clio Cloud Conference held October 10-11, 2022 in Nashville, TN (affectionately known as “ClioCon”). Members of the Nextpoint team joined over 2,000 legal professionals who attended in person, plus another 1,000 virtual attendees. We were all excited to hear from thought leaders, discuss how to navigate the “new normal” in legal practice, and enjoy first-hand access to Clio support professionals and technicians.
Nextpoint has a longstanding relationship with Clio that dates back to our days as early adopters of the cloud in legal tech. Nextpoint founder and CEO Rakesh Madhava even founded the Legal Cloud Computing Association with Jack Newton, Clio’s CEO, and the pair have been friends for many years. So, naturally, we went to ClioCon with a full crew in tow – Rakesh (or Rocky, as we fondly call him), members of our sales and marketing teams, and me – Nextpoint’s eLaw Evangelist.
The always hotly anticipated kickoff keynote from Clio CEO Jack Newton inspired the audience and provided interesting statistics and takeaways from the annual Legal Trends Report that was hot-off-the-presses. Never one to shy away from sharing hard truths for the profession, Newton addressed the possibility that an economic downturn may be on the horizon but suggested that how law firms navigated the pandemic might foretell their strengths in the future. Those firms who clung to “the old way of doing things” may have found themselves too fragile during the pandemic – but those firms that adapted and built on a “strong foundation of technology” will be able to evolve in their service offerings and connections so they can survive, and even flourish.
Perhaps not surprisingly, the Legal Trends Report showed firms that are already using cloud-based legal practice management software are better positioned to succeed in the new working environment. Forty-three percent of firms using cloud-based software are more likely to have more satisfied clients, and cloud users are 34% more likely to be happy working at the firm. Even more striking, 11% of these firms are more likely to have strong revenue streams, which means they have more resources they can use to invest in additional tools and training.
In addition, the Legal Trends Report found that the legal profession hasn’t been immune to the “Great Resignation” since 19% of lawyers reported that they left a job in the last year, and a further 9% of lawyers state they plan to leave a job in the next 6 months.
The Antifragile Law Firm
To help attendees grapple with the statistics from the Legal Trends Report and be prepared for the coming future, Newton referenced a book by Nassim Nicholas Taleb titled Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder and explained how to build an antifragile law firm built on connection, creativity, and technology.
The antifragile law firm is one that is protected from prediction errors, market volatility, and adverse events. Newton explained that companies like Netflix, Amazon, Uber, etc. have exponentially raised the bar in terms of what customers demand from service providers, and legal clients are no different. Customers of those companies expect quick delivery of services, and law firm clients expect frictionless services with intuitive onboarding, flexible billing & payment options, and seamless communication.
The “connection” component of the antifragile law firm focuses on the need to build a community with colleagues and clients. On the “creativity” side, Newton commented that the legal system mostly stamps out creativity in so many people, but it’s critical that lawyers think about how to innovate in the delivery of their legal services. In fact, Newton encouraged the attendees to “reject the status quo” because “there is an opportunity to take risks.”
And lastly, Newton iterated that the rise of cloud-based technology has been a game-changer for law firms in terms of being able to work from anywhere at any time, especially over the last 2-3 years. It is the technology, such as cloud-based legal practice management systems, that allow legal professionals to work throughout the day rather than a traditional 9-to-5 schedule, and this gives them the option to better stay in touch with colleagues and clients. This all provides lawyers with a better work-life balance by letting them work when they want to all while staying fully connected.
Nextpoint and Clio Make a Great Team!
The Nextpoint team was in full force answering questions from attendees about managing their electronic files and documents in the cloud. Most attendees were already using Clio and other cloud-based tools, which means they had already made the investments to keep their practices antifragile. ClioCon attendees were thrilled to hear about Nextpoint’s features and how it can connect into their Clio account to sync with current and open matters. It’s no surprise that we make a great team after years of complementing one another as long-time proponents of the cloud in legal tech.
The general excitement level at ClioCon 2022 reflected a successful conference, if nothing else because people were happy to meet and connect and network in person once again. There was a bevy of excellent speakers, thought leaders, educational sessions, and many Clio partners sharing hugs, fist bumps, and good advice all around. We’re happy that we got to travel to Nashville to see our friends at Clio and meet so many future-forward legal professionals excited to invest in legal tech.
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